Burb Beauty | Neiman Marcus takes itself off the auction block
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Neiman Marcus takes itself off the auction block

Neiman Marcus said it has given up trying to sell itself, just three months after the luxury retailer announced a plan to explore strategic alternatives.

The announcement follows The Post’s exclusive report last month that merger talks with Saks Fifth Avenue owner Hudson’s Bay had hit a roadblock over concerns that Neiman faced possible legal challenges from creditors.

More recently, Neiman execs had met with Related Cos. to discuss a possible investment in Neiman by the New York-based real estate giant, whose Hudson Yards complex that’s under development in Midtown Manhattan will be anchored by a Neiman Marcus store, sources told The Post.

“While looking ahead, we know challenges remain, but we are encouraged by the strategies we have in place to improve our operational efficiencies and performance,” Chief Executive Karen Katz said on a post-earnings call, revealing that Neiman was taking itself off the block.

Neiman, struggling to seek relief from a swelling debt load, hired investment bank Lazard to bolster its balance sheet, Reuters reported in March, as the company continued to struggle with lackluster demand in the face of stiff competition from Amazon and fast-fashion retailers such as H&M and Zara.

Much of Neiman Marcus’s debt load stems from its $6 billion leveraged buyout in 2013, when its current owners, Ares Management and Canadian public pension fund CPPIB, acquired it from other private equity firms.

Neiman Marcus, which also owns the Bergdorf Goodman stores on Fifth Avenue, had total liabilities of $6.4 billion, including $1.2 billion of deferred income taxes according to its latest annual filing.

The company on Tuesday reported its fourth straight quarterly loss, and posted a nearly 5 percent dip in same-store sales for the third quarter ending April 29.

Retailers have struggled to cope with changes in consumer tastes as shoppers increasingly shop online or spend on travel and big-ticket home improvement items and less on apparel and accessories.

Earlier this year Dallas-based Neiman Marcus also shelved plans for an initial public offering.

With Reuters

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